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chimivee 05-11-2010 04:33 PM

Wooden Screen Door Spline
I need to replace the screen in my screen door. The door's frame is made of wood that is perhaps 1/2" thick. There's a 1/4" wide channel on the frame's interior edge into which a black rope is stapled (a million times) that serves as the spline to hold the screen material.

The only available splines I saw at Home depot are the rubber type, and the thickest is .19". They do have generic nylon braided rope, but I'm not sure if this is suitable or what size to get (does it compress? stretch? what about when wet? etc).

a) Any ideas of what is/where to get a suitable replacement spline (rubber or rope)?

b) Or can the existing rope spline be reused?


Orange, CA

tpolk 05-11-2010 04:45 PM

they do make diff splines and a roller tool for pushing it into the groove. with a proper fit staples are not needed, keep slight tension on the spline material as you roll it into the groove. you may need to apply a couple of temp staples across from where you are splining to get tension in the screen and hand tension on the screen during the last third

Just Bill 05-12-2010 05:54 AM

Measure the groove in the door, use a vinyl spline about the same size. The screen takes up part of that dimension.

chimivee 05-17-2010 11:56 AM

Thanks for the replies. I went to the four major hardware stores in my area - Lowes, HD, Ace, OSH - and the largest spline I found was .21" at Ace. I suppose I'll order some online. If anybody has a recommended source let me know.

And to be clear, because the channel is 1/4", I should get 1/4" spline? And the thickness of the screen itself will make the fit tight?


Orange, CA

tpolk 05-17-2010 11:57 AM

is there spline in it now

chimivee 05-17-2010 12:10 PM

Here's what I found:

• 25' Long
• .250 (1/4")
• For aluminum & fiberglass screens
• Top quality vinyl
• Round hollow core and serrated used to hold screen material in window and screen door frames
• Black
• Bagged

I'm wondering… it says for "aluminum and fiberglass screens"… Because this is for a wooden screen door, is expansion/contraction of the frame an issue? Or is it minor enough not to be a problem? [A correction to my initial post: screen door is about 1" thick (not 1/2") with 1/4" channel.] Again, the original screen was held in with a stapled rope spline - which, after removing, I can see would be a major pain to replicate.

chimivee 05-17-2010 12:15 PM


Originally Posted by tpolk (Post 442954)
is there spline in it now

Yes (well, there was - I tore it out). It was a braided rope spline, that was stapled in place with long narrow staples about every 1.5". House was built in the '50s, but I don't know how old the screen door is .

chimivee 05-17-2010 12:22 PM

Screen door is just like this:

Sparky8370 05-17-2010 03:02 PM

If it were me, I'd take my router and remove the lip between the opening and the spline. So that you have a recessed pocket just larger than the opening. Then I would have a screen with an aluminum frame made. I would also have a window with the same type of frame and maybe some lexan. That way I could switch them out. If it was rugged enough to support it, I'd go with glass- not sure if you can get a custom low-e one made, but that's the route I'd go if available.

Mudslide 08-16-2010 12:54 PM

Chimivee, I'm wondering how this worked out for you. I'm in the same situation with an older door and the rope spline. Thought I'd check in to see what the final result was for you before I place on online order.


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